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Indian Telcos Given 10 Days To Submit Fresh Applications For 5G Trials

Indian’s journey to 5G has experienced continued delays, and the country continues to lag behind countries like the U.S., South Korea and China, where 5G networks are already live. And now, with India’s 5G spectrum auction planned to take place between March and April of 2020, the Indian government has given the telcos 10 days to submit fresh applications for 5G trials. However, mobile operators and equipment vendors remain split over the government’s decision to start 5G trials in the first place, making the whole process that much more complicated.

Specifically, the telcos believe 5G trials will prove important when developing local use-cases, while equipment providers say it is too late. From the perspective of the vendors, the over 50 commercial 5G networks that have already been developed around the world and the use cases they have established can be modified for Indian sector.

For the proposed 5G trials, operators will reportedly have access to the 3300–3600 MHz band allocated to 5G, as well as to the 700 MHz band and the 26 GHz band. The price tags for these bands, as well as the quantity available to each bidder, however, remains unclear, and with Indian’s history of soaring spectrums prices, many remain apprehensive.

Further, most likely due to the “lateness” of the trials, telcos will only being given six months to test their network connectivity, compared to the usual one-year duration.

In a move that has irked the U.S., the Indian government is permitting all network equipment suppliers, including Huawei, to participate in the upcoming trials. The U.S. government has been on India’s case for months, urging the country to ban the Chinese tech company.

While Huawei has been given a place at India’s 5G table, the Chinese vendor will have to meet certain government regulations and adhere to strict security standards, which the vendor agreed to back in October.―RCR Wireless News

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